Live Blog: COVID Hospitalizations Drop To Lowest Level This Year

Nathan Law

This is a breaking news blog for all of the latest updates about the coronavirus pandemic. Get our complete coronavirus coverage here → COVID Hospitalizations Drop To Lowest Level This Year – 6:23 p.m., Saturday, June 5, 2021 San Diego County public health officials on Saturday reported 120 new COVID-19 […]

This is a breaking news blog for all of the latest updates about the coronavirus pandemic. Get our complete coronavirus coverage here →


COVID Hospitalizations Drop To Lowest Level This Year

– 6:23 p.m., Saturday, June 5, 2021

San Diego County public health officials on Saturday reported 120 new COVID-19 infections and one new death, as hospitalizations dropped to 91 and the number of people with at least one dose of vaccine crossed the 2 million mark.

Saturday’s data reflect a decrease of four hospitalized COVID-19 patients from Friday, along with a decline of two patients in intensive care units to 31. There are 40 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

The 91 patients — the fewest this year — represent only the fourth time this year the number of coronavirus-related hospitalizations has dropped below 100.

Saturday’s figures increased the cumulative case count to 280,675 and the death toll to 3,764.

A total of 10,625 tests were reported to the county on Saturday with 1.1% returning positive. The 14-day rolling average percentage of positive cases is 0.7%. — City News Service

California Virus State Of Emergency Remains, For Now

– 10:47 p.m., Saturday, June 5, 2021

Gov. Gavin Newsom says he will not lift a coronavirus state of emergency on June 15. But he still intends to lift most mask and other restrictions on that date.

Newsom said Friday he will keep in place the emergency order that gives him broad authority to issue, alter or suspend state laws and regulations. Newsom said he is not taking the summer months off from the threat posed by the coronavirus.

Republicans in the state Senate have tried repeatedly to pass a concurrent resolution to end the state of emergency. But Democrats in the majority have blocked their efforts. — Associated Press

COVID-19 Hospitalizations Drop Again As First Vaccinations Cross Milestone

– 6:31 p.m., Friday, June 4 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 126 new COVID-19 infections and two new deaths, as hospitalizations dropped to 95 and the number of people with at least one dose of vaccine crossed the 2 million mark.

Thursday’s data reflect a decrease of two hospitalized COVID-19 patients from Thursday, along with a decline of one patient in intensive care units to 33. There are 52 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

The 95 patients — the fewest this year — represent only the third time this year the number of coronavirus-related hospitalizations has dropped below 100.

Thursday’s figures increased the cumulative case count to 280,555 and the death toll to 3,763.

A total of 17,437 tests were reported to the county on Friday with 0.7% returning positive. The 14-day rolling average percentage of positive cases is 0.7%.

More than 100 mobile vaccination events during June will seek to increase the portion of county residents who are vaccinated to the county’s goal of 75% of those 12 and older. – City News Service

The U.S. Is Sending 1 Million Vaccines To Mexico Border Cities And Resort Spots

– 11:12 a.m., Friday, June 4 2021

One million Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccines are heading to Mexico from the U.S. with most of the shots set to service resort areas and spots along the border.

The batch of vaccines is part of the 25 million excess doses the White House announced on Thursday would be shipped to other countries around the world. Much of the vaccine distribution will be through COVAX, an international system aimed at helping to vaccinate people in the world’s poorest countries.

In a bid to boost the country’s economy, Assistant Health Secretary Hugo López-Gatell said much of those 1 million vaccines will be sent to Caribbean resort hotspots such as Cancún, Pacific coast resorts like Los Cabos, and cities along the U.S. border.

Mexico, a country of roughly 130 million, has been hard hit by the coronavirus and has struggled to control its spread.

According to government data, Mexico has given more than 23.2 million adults in the country at least one shot of a COVID-19 vaccine. As of Thursday night, Johns Hopkins University’s Coronavirus Tracker reports more than 2.4 million confirmed coronavirus cases in Mexico with more than 228,000 deaths.

Government officials have indicated that the actual death toll from the pandemic is likely far higher, according to The Associated Press., with a preliminary assessment suggesting more than 350,000 excess deaths — 54% above the official toll.

– NPR

County Making Push For Vaccinations In June Before Winding Down Efforts

– 6:56 p.m., Thursday, June 3, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 83 new COVID-19 infections and one death Thursday as hospitalizations dropped to 97, the lowest figure this year.

Thursday’s data reflects a decrease of 14 hospitalized COVID-19 patients from Wednesday, along with a decline of nine patients in intensive care units to 34.

The 97 patients represent only the second time this year the number of coronavirus-related hospitalizations has dropped below 100.

San Diego County’s latest coronavirus-related death was of a man in his 70s with underlying medical conditions who died Saturday.

Thursday’s figures increased the cumulative case count to 280,429 and the death toll to 3,761.

More than 100 mobile vaccination events during June will seek to increase the portion of county residents who are vaccinated to the county’s goal of 75% of those 12 and older. – City News Service

The White House Says It Has Started Shipping Surplus COVID-19 Vaccines Abroad

– 1:20 p.m., Thursday, June 3, 2021

The United States will send its first shipments of surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses abroad on Thursday, spelling out for the first time how it will share its wealth of vaccines with parts of the world struggling to get shots in arms.

The Biden administration has previously said it would share 80 million doses by the end of June. “We know that won’t be sufficient,” said Jeff Zients, coordinator of the White House COVID-19 response. But he said it’s an important step toward boosting global production and trying to end the global pandemic.

“We expect a regular cadence of shipments around the world across the next several weeks. And in the weeks ahead, working with the world’s democracies we will coordinate a multilateral effort, including the G7 to combat and end the pandemic,” Zients said.

The U.S. has contracts for hundreds of millions more vaccine doses than it could possibly use — and this is a major move by the Biden administration to attempt to exert global leadership after months of pressure from global health organizations.

Zients said 75% of the first 25 million doses will be allotted through COVAX, an international distribution system aimed at helping vaccinate people in the world’s poorest countries.

The administration also removed contract ratings under the Defense Production Act that prioritized U.S. contracts for suppliers to AstraZeneca, Novavax and Sanofi — three vaccines not currently authorized for use in the United States.

“While the manufacturers will continue to make these three vaccines, this action will allow U.S.-based companies that supply these vaccine manufacturers to make their own decisions on which orders to fulfill first,” Zients said. – NPR

Why Contact Tracing Couldn’t Keep Up With The U.S. COVID Outbreak

– 1:20 p.m., Thursday, June 3, 2021

Here’s one (more) sign the COVID-19 pandemic is on the decline in the United States.

NPR’s latest survey of state health departments with the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security finds many are winding down the contact tracing programs they scrambled to grow last year. More than half of the 36 health departments that responded to the survey in late May had fewer tracers than in December, and the vast majority isn’t planning to hire more.

In a way, that makes sense. With coronavirus infections tapering off in most parts of the country, public health experts said a smaller workforce may be able to keep on top of current outbreaks.

But there are some big questions as these programs transition from full-throttle crisis mode to something new. Why, despite furious efforts to ramp up the workforce last year, was the U.S. not able to use testing and contact tracing to control the pandemic?

And how can the country be better positioned for the next public health emergency?

The Biden administration recently allocated $7.4 billion in funding to hire public health workers, potentially infusing the system with resources. Now state and local health departments, along with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, have to figure out how to build on the success and learn from the failures of the past year.

“What’s coming next — with all this funding from the federal government to scale up public health workforces — is really critical,” said Crystal Watson, a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security and collaborator with NPR on the contact tracing survey.

“It has to go beyond, how do we sustain this specific workforce very focused on contact tracing, to how do we make sure that we have the workforce we need to do better public health every day?” – NPR

San Diego County Making Big Push For Vaccinations In June Before Winding Down Efforts

– 3:40 p.m., Wednesday, June 2, 2021

San Diego County plans to make one final push to get the population vaccinated against COVID-19 during the month of June before winding efforts down to a more flu-shot-like situation this summer and fall, county officials announced Wednesday.

More than 100 mobile vaccination events during June will seek to increase the portion of county residents who are vaccinated to the county’s goal of 75% of those 12 and older — 2,101,936 people. As of Wednesday, 1,952,650 people have received one jab of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines — or 92.9% of the goal — and 1,544,252 people who have fully vaccinated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna coronavirus vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine — 73.5% of the goal.

More than 4.09 million doses have been received by the county, with more than 3.69 million administered. County officials reported receiving 145,780 doses this week.

San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher encouraged those who have been holding out to get vaccinated against the virus.

“The vaccine is free, it is safe and we know it is effective,” Fletcher said.

To make the shot more appealing, the county will partner with the San Diego Padres. Any person vaccinated between Thursday and June 30 will be entered into a drawing with the possibility to win one of 100 pairs of Padres tickets. On June 12 from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. and June 26 from noon to 4 p.m., the county and the Padres will hold a vaccination event at Gallagher Square outside Petco Park, where the first 1,000 people to get a shot on both days will receive commemorative T-shirts.

Following June’s efforts, the county will scale back vaccination efforts gradually. There will still be vaccines and tests available at sites around the county for the foreseeable future, Fletcher said.

A full list of available vaccination sites can be here.

County officials reported 42 new cases on Wednesday, increasing the cumulative total to 280,346. Deaths were not reported at a Wednesday news conference. The death toll was 3,756 as of Tuesday.

Of 6,305 tests reported Wednesday, 0.7% returned positive and the two-week rolling average remains 0.7%.

San Diego County’s latest state-reported COVID-19 numbers dipped low enough to set the region on a path to lift some restrictions as soon as Wednesday — if the numbers remain below a certain threshold. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports Data Low Enough To Enter Yellow Tier, But Must Wait Another Week

– 10:45 a.m., Wednesday, June 2, 2021

San Diego County’s state-reported COVID-19 numbers Tuesday dipped low enough to set the region on a path to lift some COVID-19 restrictions as soon as next week.

The county remains in the orange tier of the state’s four-tiered, color-coded reopening plan. On Tuesday, the state reported the county’s adjusted case rate was 1.7 new daily cases per 100,000 population — low enough to qualify for the yellow tier, the state’s least restrictive. That is an improvement from last week’s 2.4 new cases per 100,000.

The county’s testing positivity rate is 1.3% and the health equity quartile positivity rate — the rate a county’s most vulnerable quarter of people are testing positive for the virus — is 1.5%, both low enough to be in the yellow tier. Those rates have dropped from 1.5% and 1.8% from last week.

However, to land in the yellow tier next Tuesday, the county would need to report an average of fewer than two new cases per 100,000 for another week.

The state plans to lift most COVID-19-related limitations on June 15, no matter where the counties fall in those above metrics at the time. – City News Service

Alpha, Beta Instead Of Britain, South Africa. Why The WHO Is Renaming COVID Variants

– 1:23 p.m., Tuesday, June 1, 2021

The World Health Organization is hoping to simplify the way the public talks about the growing number of variants of the coronavirus. It will start assigning different letters of the Greek alphabet to each new mutation of the virus.

The new system takes the names of new variants of SARS-CoV-2 and moves them away from what can be sometimes confusing scientific nomenclature, or shorthand that puts heavy emphasis on where the variants were first discovered.

For example, under the new system, the B.1.1.7 variant, which was first identified in the U.K., will be known as Alpha. The B.1.351 variant, first spotted in South Africa, will be called Beta, while the variant initially found in Brazil, known as P.1, will go by Gamma.

The new names won’t officially replace the scientific names already assigned to new variants, but the WHO said it is making the change in an attempt to avoid fueling stigma towards nations where new variants arise. – Jason Breslow, NPR

San Diego County Reports 45 New COVID-19 Cases, Continuing Significant Decrease

– 4:20 p.m., Monday, May 31, 2021

San Diego County reported 45 new COVID-19 cases Monday as health officials reminded the public to continue taking precautions to avoid getting and transmitting COVID-19 this holiday weekend.

While the number of local COVID-19 cases has significantly decreased in recent weeks, not enough San Diegans have been vaccinated for the region to achieve herd immunity, officials said.

Monday’s data increased the county’s case total to 280,253, while the death toll remained at 3,756. – City News Service

County Reports 58 COVID-19 Cases, Over 1.5 Million Residents Fully Vaccinated

– 6:30 p.m., Sunday, May 30, 2021

San Diego County has reported 58 new COVID-19 cases as public health officials reminded the public to continue taking precautions to avoid getting and transmitting COVID-19 this holiday weekend.

Sunday’s data increased the county’s case total to 280,208, while the death toll remained at 3,756.

As of Sunday, 72.8% of county residents 12 and older have been fully vaccinated and 92.4% have at least one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines

The county’s goal is to fully vaccinate 75% of the population, or 2,101,936 people.

A total of 1,529,646 San Diego County residents are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine, officials report, or 72.8% of the goal.

Additionally, 1,942,938 San Diego County residents have received at least one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or 92.4% of that goal.

More than 4.09 million doses have been received by the county, with more than 3.67 million administered.

A full list of available vaccination sites can be found on the county’s website. – City News Service

County Reports 108 COVID-19 Cases As Officials Urge Caution This Memorial Day Weekend

– 6:15 p.m., Saturday, May 29, 2021

San Diego County has reported 108 new COVID-19 cases as public health officials reminded the public to continue taking precautions to avoid getting and transmitting COVID-19 this holiday weekend.

While the number of local COVID-19 cases has significantly decreased in recent weeks, not enough San Diegans have been vaccinated for the region to achieve herd immunity.

Saturday’s data increased the county’s case total to 280,150, while the death toll remained at 3,756.

Of 10,193 tests reported Saturday, 1.1% returned positive, pushing the 14-day rolling average to 0.8%, the lowest this year.

Two new community outbreaks were confirmed Saturday. In the past seven days, eight community outbreaks were confirmed. The community outbreaks trigger is seven or more in seven days.

As of Saturday, 72.3% of county residents 12 and older have been fully vaccinated and 92.1% have at least one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines

The county’s goal is to fully vaccinate 75% of the population, or 2,101,936 people.

A total of 1,520,120 San Diego County residents are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine, officials report, or 72.3% of the goal.

Additionally, 1,936,254 San Diego County residents have received at least one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or 92.1% of that goal.

More than 4.09 million doses have been received by the county, with more than 3.65 million administered. – City News Service

County Reports 83 COVID-19 Cases As Officials Urge Caution This Holiday

– 5:12 p.m., Friday, May 28, 2021

San Diego County reported 83 new COVID-19 cases Friday as public health officials reminded the public to continue taking precautions to avoid getting and transmitting COVID-19 this holiday weekend.

While the number of local COVID-19 cases has significantly decreased in recent weeks, not enough San Diegans have been vaccinated for the region to achieve herd immunity.

“The pandemic is not over. We must continue taking precautions to protect San Diegans who can’t or won’t get vaccinated,” said Dr. Wilma Wooten, the county public health officer. “People who have not been vaccinated should be wearing a mask, keeping their distance and avoiding large gatherings.”

San Diegans who get vaccinated against the virus will be able to participate in the state’s drawing to distribute $116.5 million in prizes. The state will be including all the names in the San Diego Immunization Registry in its drawing.

Two million Californians who have not gotten vaccinated will be eligible to get a $50 gift card if they get vaccinated by June 15. The $100 million in gift cards will be distributed when they are fully vaccinated. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 101 New COVID-19 Cases, 1 Death As Case Rate Drops Below 1%

– 7:00 p.m., Thursday, May 27, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 101 new COVID-19 cases and one death today, as the rolling percentage of positive cases dipped below 1%.

Of 13,565 tests reported Thursday, 0.7% returned positive, pushing the 14-day rolling average to 0.9%, the lowest this year.

Thursday’s data increased the county’s case total to 279,959, while the death toll reached 3,756.

Hospitalizations from the virus increased for the second consecutive day following a drop into the double digits for the first time since April 1, 2020 on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, reported hospitalizations increased from 98 to 107, Thursday’s hospitalizations increased to 117 — 38 of which are in intensive care units.

There are 58 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

As of Thursday, 53.4% of county residents 12 and older have been fully vaccinated and 68.5% have at least one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines. – City News Service

California To Offer $116M In Coronavirus Vaccine Prize Money

– 2:14 p.m., Thursday, May 27, 2021

Californians will be eligible for $116.5 million in prize money for getting coronavirus shots, Gov. Gavin Newsom announced Thursday, a windfall aimed at getting millions more vaccinated before the nation’s most populous state fully reopens next month.

The state estimates about 12 million Californians 12 and older have not been vaccinated. About 63% of the 34 million eligible have gotten shots, though the pace has slowed markedly in recent weeks as infection rates have plummeted to record lows.

California isn’t the first state to offer vaccine prizes, though its pot of money is the largest, and so is the most valuable single prize: $1.5 million. The state’s reopening is pegged for June 15, and on that day a drawing will be held to award 10 vaccinated people the top prize. – Associated Press

San Diego County Reports 73 New COVID-19 Cases, 2 Deaths

– 2:14 p.m., Thursday, May 27, 2021

San Diego County public health officials have reported 73 new COVID-19 cases and two new deaths, as hospitalizations from the virus rose back into the triple digits.

On Tuesday, hospitalizations from the virus dropped into the double digits for the first time since April 1, 2020. On Wednesday, reported hospitalizations increased from 98 to 107.

There are 45 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

Wednesday’s data bring the county’s case total to 279,858, while the death toll reached 3,755.

The two new deaths were men who died on Monday. One was in his 60s and one was in his 50s. Both had underlying conditions. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 71 New COVID-19 Cases, 4 Deaths As Hospitalizations Drop

– 6:03 p.m., Tuesday, May 25, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 71 new COVID-19 cases and four new deaths Tuesday, as hospitalizations from the virus dropped into double digits.

Tuesday’s data brings the case total to 279,785, while the death toll reached 3,753.

Hospitalizations dipped to 98 from Monday’s reported 112, and those in intensive care units declined to 33 from Monday’s 38. Those numbers were 161 people hospitalized and 47 in ICU beds one month ago. There are 55 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

San Diego County remains in the “orange tier” of the state’s color- coded reopening plan, with an adjusted case rate of 2.4 new cases per 100,000 people.

To land in the yellow tier, the most permissive, the county would need to report an average of fewer than two new cases per 100,000 for two consecutive weeks.

That is unlikely to happen before the state lifts most COVID-19- related limitations on June 15. – City News Service

San Diego County, Mexican Consulate Partner On Cross-Border Vaccines

– 6:01 p.m., Tuesday, May 25, 2021

A coalition of six United States subsidiary companies and San Diego County public officials Tuesday sponsored a COVID-19 mobile clinic to vaccinate 10,000 maquiladora workers employed in Baja California, Mexico.

“We started, six to eight months ago, talking to the private sector on how to help our people with their health and the economy of our state,” said Luis Lutteroth, president of Consejo de Desarrollo de Tijuana, speaking on behalf of Camara Nacional de la Industria de la Transformacion Tijuana and the coalition. “We have to accelerate the pace of recovery from this pandemic because our health and our economy are hurting.”

The coalition of maquiladoras — subsidiary manufacturing companies in Mexico with an administration facility in the United States — consists of Poly, Compania Embotelladora Del Fuerte-Coca Cola, Jacuzzi, Flex, Call Center Services International-CCSI and Sempra-IEnova. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 25 New COVID-19 Cases, No Deaths

– 6:16 p.m., Monday, May 24, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 25 new COVID-19 cases and no new deaths Monday, as the number of vaccinations received in the county crossed the 4 million mark.

Monday’s data brings the case total to 279,714 while the death toll was reduced to 3,749 following a county audit of deaths. Two previously reported deaths were removed from the case and death counts during routine quality assurance and reinspection because the cause was determined not to be COVID-19.

Of 5,985 tests reported Monday to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Sunday, 0.4% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average is 1%.

San Diego County began its “Our Health is Worth a Shot” challenge Monday, allowing youth between the ages of 12 and 24 to submit video and visual art projects encouraging people to get vaccinated. The challenge will accept entries through June 14.

Details on prizes and eligibility can be found online. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 76 New COVID-19 Cases As Vaccination Rate Slows

– 6:00 p.m., Sunday, May 23, 2021

San Diego County public health officials have reported 76 new COVID-19 cases and no new deaths Sunday.

Sunday’s data increased the county’s case total to 279,689. The death toll remained at 3,751 as of Sunday.

Of 6,686 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Sunday, 1% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average is 1.3%.

The San Diego County Health & Human Services Agency has received more than 3.94 million doses of coronavirus vaccine and administered nearly 3.52 million of them.

More than 1.88 million San Diego County residents have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 89.6% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of residents 12 and older, or 2,101,936 people.

Around 1.44 million — or 68.9% of the county’s goal — in the 12-or- older age range are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The county reported receiving 252,610 vaccines this week. A full list of available sites can be found on the county’s website. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 60 New COVID-19 Cases As Vaccination Rate Slows

– 6:05 p.m., Saturday, May 22, 2021

San Diego County public health officials have reported 60 new COVID-19 cases and three new deaths as the county grapples with a major question about what happens when the vaccine supply exceeds the demand.

Saturday’s data increased the county’s case total to 279,613. The death toll was 3,751 as of Saturday.

Of 13,458 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Saturday, just .4% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average is 1.3%.

The San Diego County Health & Human Services Agency has received more than 3.94 million doses of coronavirus vaccine and administered nearly 3.48 million of them as of Wednesday’s report.

More than 1.86 million San Diego County residents have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 88.9% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of residents 12 and older, or 2,101,936 people.

Around 1.42 million — or 67.6% of the county’s goal — in the 12-or- older age range are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 145 COVID-19 Cases As Rate Of Vaccines Given Slow

– 4:30 p.m., Thursday, May 20, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 145 new COVID-19 cases Thursday as it grapples with a major question about what happens when the vaccine supply exceeds the demand.

One way the county seeks to address this issue is by continuing mobile vaccination sites. Since the county began using the mobile sites — there are now 27 — more than 2,500 people have received at least one dose.

San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher said people are still interested in getting vaccines, but it is up to health agencies to make it convenient by bringing the doses to them.

The county reported receiving 252,610 vaccines this week. A full list of available sites can be found online.

RELATED: Tracking COVID-19 In San Diego

Additionally, on Monday, San Diego County will begin its “Our Health is Worth a Shot” challenge, allowing youth between the ages of 12 and 24 to submit video and visual art projects encouraging people to get vaccinated. The challenge will accept entries through June 14.

Details on prizes and eligibility can be found here.

The county has administered more than 3.4 million vaccine doses to date.

Thursday’s data increased the county’s case total to 279,489. Officials did not release information regarding deaths at their weekly COVID-19 news conference. That total was 3,746 as of Wednesday. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 91 COVID-19 Cases

– 6:19 p.m., Wednesday, May 19, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 91 new COVID-19 cases and four deaths Wednesday as the region nears 4 million doses of vaccines received and more than 3.4 million administered.

The latest deaths declared to be caused by the coronavirus were of four men in their 70s and older who died between July 2, 2020 and Wednesday. Those deaths from 2020 and deaths in January and February were added to the list Wednesday after a review of incorrect or incomplete death certificates which required the analysis of the patients’ medical records to determine if they were COVID-19 deaths.

One of the deceased was in his mid-80s, another in his mid-70s and two were in their early 70s.

Wednesday’s data increases the county’s totals to 279,344 cases and 3,746 deaths.

Of 12,564 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Wednesday, 1% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average decreased to 1.4% from Tuesday’s 1.5%. – City News Service

San Diego Community Colleges To Require Vaccinations

– 5:40 p.m., Wednesday, May 19, 2021

The San Diego Community College District will increase its on-campus and hybrid classes to at least 22% this fall, and all students and employees who are on-site will be required to be vaccinated against the coronavirus, officials announced Wednesday.

The vaccination requirement comes on the assumption that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration fully authorizes one or more of the vaccines. Vaccines from Moderna, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson have been given under emergency use authorization for months.

Exceptions to the district’s policy may be granted on medical and religious grounds. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 108 COVID-19 Cases; Remains In Orange Tier

– 5:58 p.m., Tuesday, May 18, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 108 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday as the county’s state-calculated, adjusted case rate fell to 3.4 per 100,000.

Last week’s adjusted case rate was 3.7 per 100,000. Both numbers place San Diego County firmly in the “orange tier” of the state’s color-coded reopening plan.

The county’s positivity rate declined to 1.6% from last week’s 1.7% and the health equity positivity rate — how the state measures a county’s most vulnerable or underserved quartile — increased to 2%.

Both of these numbers are good enough for yellow tier — however, a county is represented by its worst performing of three metrics. That leaves San Diego County in the orange tier, which features some business restrictions.

Tuesday’s data brings the total number of cases to 279,253 and the death toll remains 3,742.

Of 7,688 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Tuesday, 1% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average remained 1.5%. – City News Service

San Diego City Council Votes To Extend Outdoor Dining To July 13, 2022

– 3:40 p.m., Tuesday, May 18, 2021

San Diego businesses will be able to continue outdoor operations on sidewalks, city streets and private parking lots through July 13, 2022, under action taken Tuesday by the City Council.

The council voted 8-0 — with Councilman Chris Cate absent — to extend previous urgency ordinances allowing for outdoor business as the city seeks to develop a more robust and permanent process allowing for them. A “Spaces as Places” plan, still in development, would extend outdoor dining well beyond the COVID-19 pandemic and make official changes to the municipal code.

Without the extension, permits for all restaurants were set to expire on July 13, and permits for other business services on Aug. 3.

“Building on the success of temporary outdoor dining as a tool to help businesses through the pandemic, Spaces as Places will provide a path for the long-term recovery of local businesses and neighborhoods across San Diego,” a city staff report on the project reads. “The program will offer a menu of options approach to help foster social interaction and community building by allowing eating, drinking, recreation, public art, sidewalk vending, education, entertainment and other community gathering spaces within areas of the public right-of-way.” – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 47 COVID-19 Cases, No Deaths

– 5:30 p.m., Monday, May 17, 2021

San Diego County will adhere to California guidelines and wait until June 15 to lift the requirement for face coverings in indoor settings and crowded outdoor settings for people who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, officials said Monday.

The June date is when state officials are expected to lift most virus-related restrictions across California if the current positive trends continue.

The news came hours before the county reported the fewest new cases of the virus since early in the pandemic. Just 47 new COVID-19 cases and no new deaths were reported Monday.

Monday’s data bringing the total number of cases to 279,145 and the death toll remains 3,742.

A total of 118 people were hospitalized with the coronavirus in the county, according to Monday’s report. There were 39 patients reported in intensive care units, and 45 available, staffed ICU beds.

Of 6,450 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Monday, 1% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average dipped to 1.5%.

The county has received more than 3,735,305 doses of coronavirus vaccine and has administered 3,278,819 of them.

At total of 1,798,866 people have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 85.6% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of San Diego County residents 12 and older, or 2,101,936 people.

A total of 1,353,783 — or 64.4% of the county’s goal — in the 12-or- older age range are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The California Department of Public Health approved the Pfizer- BioNTech vaccine for 12- to 15-year-olds Wednesday, allowing the county’s 175,864 residents in that age group to make appointments to receive the shots. – City News Service

California Won’t Lift Its Mask Requirement For Another Month

– 4:00 p.m., Monday, May 17, 2021

California won’t lift its mask requirement until June 15 to give the public and businesses time to prepare and ensure cases stay low, the state health director said Monday.

“This four-week period will give Californians time to prepare for this change, while we continue the relentless focus on delivering vaccines particularly to underserved communities and those that were hard hit throughout this pandemic,” Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said.

Many other states lifted mask requirements last week after the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it’s safe for fully vaccinated people to skip face coverings and social distancing in most situations.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom already has said that if cases remain low, the state will drop nearly all COVID-19 restrictions on June 15. – Associated Press

San Diego County Reports 108 New COVID-19 Cases, 5 Deaths

– 5:30 p.m., Sunday, May 16, 2021

San Diego County public health officials have reported 108 new COVID-19 cases and five deaths, bringing the total number of cases to 279,098 and the death toll to 3,742.

A total of 130 people were hospitalized according to Sunday’s report. There were 39 patients reported Sunday in intensive care units. There are 44 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

Of 8,520 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Sunday, 1% returned positive.

The county has received more than 3,735,305 doses of coronavirus vaccine and has administered 3,278,819 of them.

A total of 1,765.927 people have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 63% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of San Diego County residents 12 and older, or 2,802,581 people.

A total of 1,314,431 — or 46.9% of the county’s goal — in the 12-or- older age range are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 138 New COVID-19 Cases, 5 Deaths

– 5:30 p.m., Saturday, May 15, 2021

San Diego County public health officials today reported 138 new COVID-19 cases and five deaths, bringing the total number of cases to 278,990 and the death toll to 3,737.

A total of 130 people were hospitalized according to Saturday’s report, a decrease from Friday’s 136. That 130 is the lowest in at least a month. Patients in intensive care units declined to 39 Saturday from Friday’s 40. There are 49 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

Of 13,105 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Saturday, 1% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average increased to 1.7%.

The county has received more than 3.73 million doses of coronavirus vaccine and has administered more than 3.27 million of them.

More than 1.76 million people have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 84% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of San Diego County residents 12 and older, or 2,802,581 people.

More than 1.31 million — or 62.5% of the county’s goal — in the 12- or-older age range are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

– City News Service

San Diego’s COVID Hospitalizations Drop To Lowest In A Month

– 5:53 p.m., Friday, May 14, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 261 new COVID-19 cases and three deaths, as hospitalizations dipped to one of the lowest numbers this year.

A total of 136 people were hospitalized in Friday’s report, a decrease from Thursday’s 151. That 136 is the lowest in at least a month. Patients in intensive care units declined to 40 from Thursday’s 43. There are 46 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

Friday’s data increased the total case count to 278,852 and the death toll to 3,721.

Of 14,758 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Friday, 2% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average increased to 1.7%. — City News Service

San Diego County Begins Administering Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine To Teens

– 5:39 p.m., Thursday, May 13, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 190 new COVID-19 cases Thursday, as county vaccination clinics began offering vaccines to San Diegans ages 12-15.

Thursday’s data increased the total case count to 278,591 and the death toll remains 3,729.

Of 15,749 tests reported to the county’s Health and Human Services Agency Thursday, 1% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average remained 1.6%.

Hospitalizations increased to 151 from Wednesday’s reported 149, while patients in intensive care units decreased to 43 from Wednesday’s 44. There are 58 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

The county has received 3,737,305 doses of coronavirus vaccine and has administered 3,250,026 of them.

A total of 1,754,766 people have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 87% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of San Diego County residents 16 and older, or 2,017,011 people.

A total of 1,298,773 — or 64.4% of the county’s goal — in the 16-or-older age range are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Those percentages are likely to change significantly when the 12-15 age cohort is added to county data this week. — City News Service

Fully Vaccinated People Can Stop Wearing Masks Indoors And Outdoors, CDC Says

– 11:31 a.m., Thursday, May 13, 2021

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says that fully vaccinated adults can safely resume activities indoors or outdoors without masks or distancing, in gatherings large or small. The announcement marks a major milestone in the effort to emerge from the coronavirus pandemic in the United States.

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky announced the new guidance Thursday.

“You can do things you stopped doing because of the pandemic,” Walensky said.

The new policy is based on recent real-world studies from Israel and the U.S. on people who’ve been vaccinated, she said.

In response to a question, Walensky said the federal mask requirement on public transportation remains in force for everyone, vaccinated or not – including on buses, trains, airplanes and in stations and airports.

“For travel, we are still asking people to continue wearing their masks,” Walensky said. She said the policy continues to be under review.

However, under the new guidance fully vaccinated people can resume domestic travel without needing to get tested before or after, and they do not need to self-quarantine. They also do not need to quarantine following a known exposure so long as they are asymptomatic.

The CDC says masks may still be required by state, local, tribal or territorial laws as well as businesses and workplaces. But some local jurisdictions swiftly announced they would update their own regulations to conform with the CDC guidance, and more are expected to follow.

The updated guidance for fully vaccinated people does not apply to health care settings, which have their own separate guidance. — NPR

San Diego County Youth Aged 12-15 Now Eligible For Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine

– 9:49 a.m., Thursday, May 13, 2021

San Diego County residents age 12 and up are now eligible to receive the Pfizer COVID-19.

The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup — an interstate compact comprised of the public health departments of California, Oregon, Washington, Nevada and Colorado to fight the pandemic — approved the Pfizer- BioNTech vaccine for 12-to-15-year-olds late Wednesday.

Gov. Gavin Newsom released a statement confirming that the Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup had reviewed the use of the vaccine and determined it is safe to use for anyone age 12 and up.

RELATED: Vaccines In San Diego County

“I encourage those who are now eligible to get vaccinated,” Newsom’s statement read. “Expanding vaccine access to teenagers is a critical step in defeating this pandemic and will get us that much closer to safely reopening California’s economy next month.”

The 175,864 county youths in that age group can now make vaccine appointments on the state’s MyTurn page. All of the county’s static vaccination clinics will have Pfizer vaccines on hand for drop- in appointments — as opposed to the mobile clinics, which use primarily Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

Parental consent is required prior to vaccination for anyone under the age of 18. In addition to parental consent, minors will have to show photo ID and proof of age, or have the parent, guardian or caregiver who accompany the minor to the appointment verify their age and identity.

– City News Service

San Diego County Reports Fewest COVID-19 Cases In More Than A Year, Awaits Vaccine OK For Teens

– 4:30 p.m., Wednesday, May 12, 2021

San Diego County health officials expect that sometime Wednesday tonight, a regional medical group could sign off on Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines for residents between the ages of 12-15, which could clear the way for administering shots to that age group as soon as Thursday morning.

The San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency reported just 94 new COVID-19 cases out of 12,693 tests logged Wednesday — a positivity rate of less than 1%.

The last time the county saw so few cases was May 31, 2020, when 73 cases were reported — nearly a full calendar year ago.

When that happens, the 175,864 county youths in that age group can make vaccine appointments on the state’s MyTurn page. All of the county’s static vaccination clinics will have Pfizer vaccines on hand for drop-in appointments — as opposed to the mobile clinics, which use primarily Johnson & Johnson vaccines.

Consent from a parent or guardian is required to get the vaccine. – City News Service

CDC Advisers Endorse Pfizer COVID Shot For Kids 12 And up

— 12:25 p.m., Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Federal health advisers have endorsed use of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine in kids as young as 12.

Earlier in the week, the Food and Drug Administration cleared the expanded use of Pfizer’s shots, which has been used for months in people 16 and older. The younger kids in some places are already rolling up their sleeves.

But much of the nation was waiting for Wednesday’s recommendation from advisers to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

New advice coming from the CDC also says it’s OK for people of any age to get a coronavirus shot at the same time as other needed vaccinations. — Associated Press

San Diego County Reports 3rd Day Of No COVID Deaths

– 5:05 p.m., Tuesday, May 11, 2021

San Diego County reported 125 new cases of COVID-19 and no new deaths Tuesday as hospitalizations and case rates remained steady.

Of 10,120 tests reported Tuesday, 1% returned positive and the county’s 14-day rolling average remained 1.5%.

Coronavirus-related hospitalizations in the county increased by one to 156 from Monday, while patients with COVID-19 in intensive care units increased by three to 46 from Monday’s 43. There were 55 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

Tuesday’s data increased the county’s cumulative total to 278,307 cases, with the death toll remaining at 3,725. — City News Service

San Diego County Reports 233 New COVID-19 Cases, No New Deaths

– 5:38 p.m., Monday, May 10, 2021

San Diego County on Monday reported 233 new COVID-19 cases but no new deaths.

Monday’s data increased the county’s cumulative total to 278,182 cases with the death toll remaining at 3,725.

Of 5,406 tests reported Monday, 4% returned positive, increasing the 14-day rolling average to 1.5%.

Hospitalizations increased to 155 on Monday from Sunday’s 150, while the number of patients in intensive care units increased from 39 Sunday to 45 in Monday’s report. There are 54 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

The county has received 3,568,195 doses of coronavirus vaccines and has administered 3,186,803 of them.

Pfizer COVID-19 Shot Expanded To US Children As Young As 12

– 2:38 p.m., Monday, May 10, 2021

The U.S. is expanding the use of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine to children as young as 12.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) said Monday the shot is safe and offers strong protection for younger teens based on testing of more than 2,000 U.S. volunteers.

Shots could begin soon once a federal vaccine panel issues recommendations for using the vaccine in 12- to 15-year-olds. Vaccinating children of all ages will be critical to a return to normalcy. Most vaccines rolling out worldwide have been authorized for adults.

The latest news is welcome for U.S. families struggling to decide what activities are safe to resume when only the youngest family members remain unvaccinated. — Associated Press


Pfizer Vaccines Available At Four San Diego Unified High School Campuses

– 7:41 a.m., Monday, May 10, 2021

Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines will be available Monday at four San Diego Unified School District high school campuses for anyone age 16 and over, officials announced.

UC San Diego Health will administer the Pfizer vaccine on a walk-in basis from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday and Tuesday at Hoover High School, Crawford High School and Lincoln High School.

Sharp HealthCare will also administer the Pfizer vaccine from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday on a walk-in and appointment basis at Canyon Hills High School, formerly known as Serra High School.

Sharp will also offer Pfizer vaccines at Kearny High School on Tuesday and Clairemont High School on Wednesday, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days.

Appointments for Monday can be found here:

Appointments for Tuesday can be found here:

Appointments for Wednesday can be found here:

UCSD will administer Pfizer vaccines on Wednesday at Morse High School and on Thursday at San Diego High School.

– City News Service

SD County Lowers 14-Day COVID-19 Testing Positivity To Record Low For 2021

– 5:52 p.m., Sunday, May 9, 2021

San Diego County public health officials have reported 190 new COVID-19 cases and no new deaths.

Of 9,203 tests reported Sunday, 2% returned positive, lowering the 14- day rolling average to 1.3%, a record low for 2021.

Sunday’s data increased the county’s cumulative total to 277,949 cases with the death toll remaining at 3,725.

Hospitalizations increased to 150 on Sunday from Saturday’s 145, while the number of patients in intensive care units increased from 38 Saturday to 39 in Sunday’s report. There are 60 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

The county has received 3,546,365 doses of coronavirus vaccines — 254,960 last week alone. That is 61,000 fewer than the week previous.

A total of 1,713,958 people have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 85% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of San Diego County residents 16 and older, or 2,017,011 people.

A total of 1,227,144 — or 60.8% of the county’s goal — of the 16-or- older age cohort are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

These numbers now include the Department of Defense and Veterans Administration data, which will be updated every two weeks. – City News Service

San Diego County Reports 226 New COVID-19 Cases, 7 Deaths

– 5:42 p.m., Friday, May 8, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 226 new COVID-19 cases and seven deaths, as the average positive testing rate continues to drop.

Of 11,265 tests reported Saturday, 2% returned positive, lowering the 14-day rolling average to 1.3%, a record for 2021.

Saturday’s data increased the county’s cumulative total to 277,759 cases and 3,725 deaths.

Hospitalizations increased to 145 from Friday’s 143, while the number of patients in intensive care units increased from 35 Friday to 38 in Saturday’s report. There are 62 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

On Friday, San Diego County announced it will partner with employers, business chambers and other groups to help host large-scale vaccination events by providing vaccines and medical personnel to administer them.

Any entity capable of coordinating a large vaccination event can visit coronavirus-sd.com/vaccine, click on the “Host a Vaccination Event” button, fill out the form, and a county team member will follow up. A large event is considered to be hundreds, if not thousands of participants. — City News Service

San Diego International Airport’s Cell Phone Lot Reopens

– 9:41 a.m., Friday, May 8, 2021

San Diego International Airport’s Cell Phone Lot, which has been closed since last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, is slated to reopen Saturday.

The lot offers around 100 parking spaces free of charge for drivers to park and wait for arriving passengers. It was shut down in April 2020 amid state and county health and safety orders and a general decrease in passenger volume.

“The opening of our Cell Phone Lot is a sign of recovery at our airport,” said Kimberly Becker, president and CEO of the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority. “With the traveling public getting vaccinated and schools on break for spring vacation, we saw some of the highest passenger volumes since the start of the pandemic in March and April. We continue to see a steady increase in travelers and we hope the reopening of our Cell Phone Lot will reduce curbside traffic and make picking up arriving passengers hassle- free.” — City News Service

The lot is open from 5 a.m. to 12:30 a.m., seven days a week, and is accessible at the intersection of North Harbor Drive and Liberator Way. — City News Service

San Diego County Reports 210 New COVID-19 Cases, 2 Deaths As Case Rate Drops

– 4:51 p.m., Friday, May 7, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 210 new COVID-19 cases and two deaths Friday, as the average positive testing rate continues to drop.

Of 14,864 tests reported Friday, 1% returned positive, lowering the 14-day rolling average to 1.3%, a record for 2021.

Friday’s data increased the county’s cumulative total to 277,533 cases and 3,718 deaths.

Hospitalizations decreased to 143 from Thursday’s 161, while the number of patients in intensive care units decreased from 37 Thursday to 35 in Friday’s report. There are 51 available, staffed ICU beds in the county.

The county has received 3,546,365 doses of coronavirus vaccines — 254,960 this week alone. That is 61,000 fewer than the week previous.

A total of 1,702,257 people have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 84.4% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of San Diego County residents 16 and older, or 2,017,011 people. — City News Service

San Diego County Likely To Stay In Orange Tier Until June 15; 226 COVID Cases Reported

– 4:00 P.m., Thursday, May 6, 2021

San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher is “not optimistic” the county will graduate into the least-restrictive of the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy tiers before June 15, the date Gov. Gavin Newsom has set to lift remaining restrictions set up to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

The county is in the orange-tier of the color-coded system due to an adjusted case rate of five new daily cases per 100,000 people. That is a significant improvement over the week before, when that adjusted case rate was 6.2, but it remains well above the fewer-than-two daily cases needed to move into the yellow tier — the reopening plan’s least restrictive — and allow for essentially all businesses to reopen.

Los Angeles and San Francisco counties transitioned into the yellow tier on Tuesday.

To advance, San Diego County would have to report statistics in the yellow tier for two consecutive weeks. Due to the delayed nature of the pandemic and how data is reported, that is unlikely — but not impossible — to happen. The state reports data on counties on Tuesdays.

County public health officials reported 226 new COVID-19 cases Thursday, increasing the county’s cumulative total to 277,323 cases. The county leaders did not report any new deaths at a news conference Thursday, and that count was 3,716 deaths as of Wednesday.

Of 15,412 tests reported Wednesday, 1% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average percentage of positive cases is 1.4%.

The county has received 3,445,425 doses of coronavirus vaccines — 254,960 this week alone. That is 61,000 fewer than the week previous.

A total of 1,692,336 people have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 83.9% of the way toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of San Diego County residents 16 and older, or 2,017,011 people.

A total of 1,194,000 — or 59.2% of the county’s goal — of the 16-or- older age cohort are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine. – City News Service

Marine Corps Cancels Miramar Air Show Due to Ongoing COVID-19 Concerns

– 11:45 a.m., Thursday, May 6, 2021

Marine Corps Air Station Miramar and Marine Corps Community Services Miramar canceled the 2021 Miramar Air Show Thursday due to the continuing public health risks associated with COVID-19.

The Miramar Air Show is the largest military air show in the world and typically one of the largest single public events in San Diego, drawing in upwards of half a million guests and spectators from around the globe every year.

Due to uncertainty surrounding the spread of coronavirus across our communities, Col. Charles Dockery, commanding officer of MCAS Miramar, made the decision to suspend this fall’s scheduled event and look to begin the early planning for a show in 2022. – City News Service

SD County Expands Evening Vaccinations And Reports 219 New COVID-19 Cases, Three Deaths

– 5:00 p.m., Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Three COVID-19 vaccination sites in north, east and south San Diego County will start offering evening hours starting Thursday, while public health officials reported 219 new COVID-19 cases and three deaths Wednesday.

The three clinics will be administering Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to people with and without appointments. People are welcome to drop in for a first dose or a second dose to a dose received elsewhere.

The sites offering doses from 1 to 8 p.m. will be:

— Oceanside: Sunday to Thursday at North Coastal Live Well Health Center, 1701 Mission Ave.;

— Chula Vista: Sunday to Thursday at South Region Live Well Center at Chula Vista, 690 Oxford St.; and

— El Cajon: Tuesday to Saturday at East Public Health Center, 367 N. Magnolia Ave.

Wednesday’s data increased the county’s cumulative totals to 277,097 cases and 3,716 deaths.

Hospitalizations among people diagnosed with COVID-19 decreased by one from Tuesday’s figures to 155 people. Of those, 42 are in intensive care units, unchanged from Tuesday. There were 52 staffed, available ICU beds in the county.

Of 17,363 tests reported Wednesday, 1% returned positive. The 14-day rolling average percentage of positive cases is 1.4%.

A total of 3,086,545 doses of coronavirus vaccines have arrived in the county, with 2,847,132 administered.

A total of 1,508,825 people have received one dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, 74.8% toward reaching the county’s goal of vaccinating 75% of San Diego County residents 16 and older, or 2,017,011 people.

A total of 1,096,519 — or 54.4% of the county’s goal — of the 16-or-older age cohort are fully inoculated with either two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Wooten told supervisors Tuesday that 83% of county residents 65 or older have gotten as least one dose of the vaccine. – City News Service

San Diego County Fails To Advance To Yellow Tier

– 6:48 p.m., Tuesday, May 4, 2021

San Diego County failed Tuesday to join Los Angeles and San Francisco counties in advancing to the least-restrictive tier of the state’s color-coded Blueprint For a Safer Economy.

San Diego County has an adjusted case rate of five new daily cases per 100,000 population to remain in the orange tier. The yellow tier is fewer than two cases.

The county’s positivity rate over the past seven days is 2.2% and needs to be below 2% to advance. Counties are sorted into tiers by their worst-performing metric.

County health officials reported 186 new COVID-19 cases and one death Tuesday, increasing the cumulative totals to 276,878 cases and 3,713 deaths.

Hospitalizations among people diagnosed with COVID-19 increased by 18 from Monday’s figures to 156 people. Of those, 42 are in intensive care units, two from Monday’s report. There are 59 staffed, available ICU beds in the county. — City News Service

LA, San Francisco Lead California Business Reopening Pace

– 5:54 p.m., Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Los Angeles and San Francisco have met state guidelines to move into the least restrictive tier for businesses to reopen during the coronavirus pandemic.

The two counties on Tuesday become the first urban areas in the state to reach the final stage of a phased reopening plan before a projected return to business as usual June 15.

Because of the low number of COVID-19 infections and high number of vaccines administered, indoor bars can reopen, larger crowds can cheer on the Dodgers and Giants, and capacity can expand at restaurants, movie theaters, amusement parks, gyms and other establishments. — Associated Press

Biden Aims To Vaccinate 70% Of American Adults By July 4

– 2:03 p.m., Tuesday, May 4, 2021

President Joe Biden has set a new vaccination goal to deliver at least one dose to 70% of American adults by July Fourth.

He’s focusing on easing access to shots as his administration tackles the vexing problem of winning over the doubters and those who are reluctant to get inoculated.

Demand for vaccines has dropped off markedly nationwide, with some states leaving more than half their vaccine doses unordered.

Biden is calling for states to make vaccines available on a walk-in basis and will direct many pharmacies to do likewise. His goal equates to delivering at least the first shot to 181 million adults and fully vaccinating 160 million by Independence Day. — Associated Press

San Diego County To Extend Hours Of Several COVID-19 Vaccination Sites

– 5:58 p.m., Monday, May 3, 2021

Three COVID-19 vaccination sites in north, east and south county will start offering evening hours starting Thursday, San Diego County public health officials announced Monday.

The three clinics will be administering Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to people with and without appointments. People are welcome to drop in for a first dose or a second dose that is a follow-up to a dose received elsewhere.

“With 1.5 million San Diegans now having received at least one dose of vaccine, and with vaccination sites more widespread, we are able to improve convenience,” said Dr. Wilma Wooten, county public health officer. “By offering evening hours, the county is providing the public even more options to help get us to herd immunity and back to the things we love.”

The sites offering doses from 1 to 8 p.m. will be:

• Oceanside: Sunday to Thursday at North Coastal Live Well Health Center, 1701 Mission Ave.;

• Chula Vista: Sunday to Thursday at South Region Live Well Center at Chula Vista, 690 Oxford St.; and

• El Cajon: Tuesday to Saturday at East Public Health Center, 367 N. Magnolia Ave.

County health officials reported 172 new COVID-19 cases Monday, increasing the cumulative total to 276,692.

No new deaths were reported Monday, and the region’s total remains 3,712. — City News Service

FDA expected to OK Pfizer vaccine for teens within week

– 4:03 p.m., Monday, May 3, 2021

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is expected to authorize Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine for kids ages 12 to 15 by next week, setting up shots for many before the beginning of the next school year.

That’s according to a federal official and a person familiar with the process. The FDA action would be followed by a meeting of a federal vaccine advisory committee to discuss whether to recommend the shot for 12- to 15-year-olds.

Then the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention would act on the committee’s recommendation. Those steps could be completed in a matter of days. — Associated Press

County Reports 154 COVID-19 Cases, 6 Deaths

– 6:00 p.m., Sunday, May 2, 2021

San Diego County public health officials have reported 154 new COVID-19 infections and six deaths, as the number of vaccines delivered to the county crossed the 3 million mark.

A total of 3,038,735 doses have now arrived in the county, with 2,795,184 of those administered. The county received 292,950 vaccines last week, 18,000 fewer than the week prior.

A total of 1,491,049 people have received one dose of Pfizer or Moderna, which is 55.4% of the county’s goal, and 1,065,477 — or 39.6% of the county’s goal — of the 16 or older age cohort are fully inoculated with either two doses of Pfizer or Moderna or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Sunday’s data increases the cumulative totals in the county to 276,520 cases and 3,712 deaths.

Of 13,987 tests reported Sunday, 2% returned positive.

Three new community outbreaks were reported Sunday.

In the past seven days, 24 community outbreaks were confirmed. There were 101 cases associated with those outbreaks. The community outbreaks trigger is seven or more in seven days.

All 23 county-run vaccine sites are now accepting walk-in visits, but the super stations are still appointment only. – City News Service

County Reports Over 50% Of COVID-19 Vaccination Goal Fully Inoculated

– 5:55 p.m., Saturday, May 1, 2021

San Diego County public health officials reported 210 new COVID-19 infections and four deaths, as the number of vaccines delivered to the county crossed the 3 million mark.

A total of 3,038,735 doses have now arrived in the county, with 2,759,104 of those administered. The county received 292,950 vaccines this week, 18,000 fewer than the week prior.

A total of 1,455,004 people have received one dose of Pfizer or Moderna, which is 72.1% of the county’s goal,

and 1,030,386 — or 51.1% of the county’s goal — of the 16 or older age cohort are fully inoculated with either two doses of Pfizer or Moderna or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

The goal is to fully vaccinate 75% of San Diego County residents 16 and older, or 2,017,011 people.

Saturday’s data increase the cumulative totals in the county to 276,366 cases and 3,706 deaths.

Of 13,987 tests reported Saturday, 2% returned positive.

Three new community outbreaks were reported Saturday.

In the past seven days, 24 community outbreaks were confirmed. There were 101 cases associated with those outbreaks. The community outbreaks trigger is seven or more in seven days.

All 23 county-run vaccine sites are now accepting walk-in visits, but the super stations are still appointment only. – City News Service

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